There is only ONE Oklahoma

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The beginning of the Dog Days of Summer

The “Blat”
Since 1950 Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha Nebraska has proudly and very successfully hosted the Men’s NCAA Division I College World Series. One would think that the NCAA would never consider ‘ignoring its roots’, and turn their back on that venue in search of greener pastures. But this is something that is not only a reality; it is a necessity. Even though the stadium has seen various ‘upgrades’ and renovations, it still is in dire need of a face-lift and the city of Omaha realizes this and has taken steps to insure that this great college tradition will stay. TeeVee viewers this week will see a well-manicured playing field, tight-shot cutaways and panoramic views of the stadium. But fans that visit the park must deal with woeful parking facilities and then navigate a narrow, grungy concourse to their seats. The City of Omaha has submitted two plans to the NCAA to further solidify the CWS in the city. One plan is to build a new stadium in the downtown area; the other is a complete renovation of the ‘rickety’ existing stadium. If only cities like North Wilkesboro or Rockingham would have had the same drive to keep their ‘traditions’ we still may have been seeing races at those tracks.

Barry Corbin said it best:
Remember when Barry Corbin played the wise-talkin' General "I'd piss on a spark plug if I thought it'd do any good" Berringer in the 1980’s movie ‘War Games’? There are a few drivers’ official message boards that could use him these days as they have gone from DefCon 1 to DefCon 4 in just a matter of weeks. Just as the train wreck in War Games morphed from an innocent prank to a full-scale world crisis, the Kurt Busch and Ricky Rudd official fan forums have mirrored this. While each forum’s meltdown is caused by different reasons, the end result is the same. Corbin’s character of over 20 years ago if remade today would be something that Billy Bob Thorton would gladly accept. Like these two fan forums, Gen. Berringer goes through various stages of professionalism, anger, frustration, joy, fear, and resignation. But in the end cooler heads prevail and the call to ‘hold at DefCon 4 till we find out exactly what the hell is happening here’ is ordered. Only time will tell if total shut down and DefCon 5 is warranted for these train wrecks, but it is a piece of work to watch them unfold week after week. Someone could write a very entertaining undergrad college Psychology or Sociology paper events like these.

Speaking of fan club forums:
With the ‘law’ being handing down like a Barney Fife U-turn and subsequent ‘citizens arrest’,
it appears that some SFC fans are a bit miffed over the fines/penalties given to Kurt Busch for his momentary act of stupidity. For some strange reason they feel that 100 points and $100,000 fine is not enough of a penalty when ‘comparing’ apples to oranges of the cheating penalty for the ‘Southern Gentleman’ earlier in the year. Even going so far as to question that they thought ‘Nascar was going to get tougher and send a message’ this year. Many seem to feel that Nascar should have parked the Shrub for at least a race. But what they are not taking into consideration is the total penalty Nascar levied on the #2 team, and that was two fold. First; Nascar parked the #2 team, which resulted in the loss of at least 50 or more points. Then Nascar levied an additional 100 points. A 150-point penalty/reduction is essentially (if not more) suspending the shrub for a race.

What a difference a night makes:
The difference from the way Nascar Race Control (mainly David Hoots) and Indy Car Race Control handles their races are night and day. Hoots calmly maintains the race in a very professional manner while it seems that Indy Car official are a bunch of Keystone Cops running around barking out orders, then changing those orders, then changing back again. This type of thing was not a one-time thing, but the common theme throughout the TMS Indy Car race. While not everyone agrees with all of Hoot’s in race decisions, it is not hard to tell that he takes pride in the professionalism he and his follow race officials achieve race after race.

Team Orders?
Last Saturday night late in the race that was heard over and over, especially on the #7 Danica Patrick scanner. I found it odd that a car and driver would ‘lay back’, after closing from 30 car lengths to within a handful of the leader and 2nd place car, only to be told to ‘help your team mate get around’. Maybe this would not have been a big deal, but that same team- mate could not even pull along side the leader at all, even though Patrick’s car was able to make significant gains in each of the final few laps. I guess that is ‘racing’, but I don’t have to like it.

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